Archive for the ‘International’ Category
Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on April 11, 2013
- Developing world will have 4 billion in cities by 2030
- Urban flooding is a top worry
- “Compact cities” speed emergency response
- Colombo’s remedy for flash floods: lakes and pumps
COLOMBO, 9 April 2013 (IRIN) – With the world’s mega-cities growing even larger, policymakers – especially those in developing countries – need urban planning that will help these areas withstand the impacts of natural disasters.
The urban population in developing countries is expected to double to four billion people by 2030, from two billion at the start of the century, according to a recent World Bank report on urban planning.
The physical space of these cities is likely to triple in size to 600,000sqkm over the same period, the report revealed, noting that implementing the right planning policies will be “the key to resilient and sustainable development”.
Abhas K. Jha, a World Bank sector manager for urban and disaster risk management in East Asia and the Pacific, based in Washington, DC, told IRIN it is crucial for government officials to build cities’ “resilience” to disaster.
Need risk assessment
“An assessment of the risk levels, a cost-benefit analysis of available interventions, and an inventory of existing capacity and financial resources can guide decision-makers in cities or in national governments in the prioritization of concrete actions,” Jha said.
He added that the first step is to understand risks at the national, regional and city levels.
“We have seen that disasters can wipe out decades of progress, and that [these] impacts can be felt throughout the whole region and globally, too, through supply chains and trade patterns,” said the Bank expert.
O.P. Agrawal, an urban transport specialist and one of the co-authors of the World Bank report, said planning is paramount to avoid hefty disaster-related bills. “The sooner you get into planning cities, even those cities that are already large, the more cost-effective it will be.”
Having a lead agency helps, he said, “to get good urban planning off the ground” so city services know about one another’s plans, urban emergency services are handled more effectively and land use is regulated more easily.
South Asia is home to some of the fastest-growing cities worldwide. Some of the main cities in the region include Dhaka, Bangladesh, which has a population of 13-15 million and is home to 37 percent of the country’s people, and Colombo, Sri Lanka, which has a population of 753,000. Both are the main economic engines of their countries and are prone to natural disasters, with floods being a top threat. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in International | Tagged: Disaster, Natural Disaster, Urban planning | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on March 23, 2013
Each year President Obama honors a handful of extraordinary Americans with the Citizens Medal, one of our nation’s highest civilian honors. The Citizens Medal recognizes Americans for exemplary deeds of service outside of their regular jobs — people who feed the needy, who take care of our veterans, or who support our children.
Is there someone in your life who deserves to be recognized by President Obama?
There are 9 days left before we close nominations on the 2013 Citizens Medal. Complete this easy nomination process before the public submission period closes:
Will you nominate a hero in your community?
Last year, people like you nominated over six thousand Americans from across the country and staff at the White House reviewed every single submission. Here are just a few examples: Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in International | Tagged: 2013 Citizens Medal, Adam Burke, Citizens Medal, Extraordinary Americans, Janice Jackson, Mary Jo Copeland, Obama, Veterans Farm, White House | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on March 21, 2013
China’s Greenland Group has unveiled plans to develop Sydney’s tallest residential tower.
The $600 million development is the group’s first foray into the Australian market and will reach a height of 240 metres – surpassing the 230 metre Meriton Apartments at World Square.
Greenland Group is no stranger to big developments. The company is one of the biggest state-owned enterprises in China with developments in about 65 cities. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in International, Science &Technology | Tagged: Brookfield Asset Management, Greenland Group, Sydney’s tallest residential tower, World Square | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on March 20, 2013
[What's going on in the world? Not sometimes, but frequently we can see fight in parliament in different countries. This does not suit. How to change the world and how to bring the world in the right track then if this kind of incidents repeat in parliament?]
Fights used to break out in the U.S. Congress — an occurrence that became obsolete as news cameras started making their way onto the House and Senate floors. But the prospect of being caught on camera trading blows doesn’t seem to worry Ukrainian politicians. Earlier today, dozens of MPs got into a fist fight in the Verkhovna Rada, the Ukrainian parliament.
Here’s how it reportedly went down: When the head of the ruling, pro-Russian Party of Regions opened the session speaking Russian, his opponents in the nationalist Liberty Party began chanting “Speak Ukrainian!” and pounding on their desks. After the speaker called his opponents “chanting neo-fascists,” a member of the Liberty Party took to the podium, the Party of Regions began calling him a fascist to drown him out, and the fighting began.
Here’s a video:
Before you get too carried away by the footage, it’s worth pointing out that parliamentary fights between Ukraine’s pro-Russian and nationalist factions are not new — there is at least one a year. And in the grand scheme of political brawls, today’s was nothing special. Last year, another fight over the use of the Russian language led to several broken ribs:
Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in International | Tagged: Fight in parliament, Fight in parliament in Ukrain, Nationalist Liberty Party, Neo-fascists, Pro-Russian Party, Ukrainian parliamentary brawl, Verkhovna Rada | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on February 21, 2013
Idol series, one of several television shows that give formerly unknown persons an opportunity to become stars. The Idol series began in the United Kingdom and has since spread around the world - Australia, Singapore, Canada, France, Germany, India, the United States, Denmark, Norway, the Netherlands, Finland, Sweden, South Africa, West African countries, Indonesia, and many other countries. Japanese idol, a heavily promoted and merchandised singer or actor,a model that will later heavily influence the conception of “Idol” in Other Asian countries Pop Culture (Such as: Hong Kong,South Korea, Taiwan, Singapore …).
Simon Cowell was given the role of judge on the first series of Pop Idol in the UK by then ITV Controller of Entertainment Claudia Rosencrantz in 2001, he was then judge on the first season of American Idol in 2002. With his notoriously critical reputation, Cowell is likened to TV personalities such as Judith Sheindlin and Anne Robinson. Cowell also appeared on the one-off World Idol programme in 2003, where it became clear that each country’s version of the Idol had attempted to come up with its own “Simon Cowell” type personality. In 2003, Cowell placed No 33 on Channel 4‘s list of the all-time 100 Worst Britons. Cowell’s S Records signed the top two finishers of the first season of Pop Idol, Will Young and Gareth Gates, both of whom went on to have No 1 UK hits. Efforts begun in 2001 materialised in 2004, when Cowell returned to his group manufacturing roots with his latest brainchild, the internationally successful operatic pop group Il Divo, consisting of three opera singers and one pop singer of four different nationalities. Inspired by the success of Il Divo, Simon created a child version, Angelis, beating competition from many similar groups emerging at Christmas 2006.
On 11 January 2010, Cowell’s exit from American Idol was made official. The 2010 season was Cowell’s last on the show. It was also announced that FOX had acquired the rights to The X Factor USA, an American version of Cowell’s popular British show, The X Factor, which began in September 2011.
Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in International | Tagged: Angelis, Australia, Canada, Claudia Rosencrantz, Denmark, Finland, France, Gareth Gates, Germany, Hong Kong, Idol series, India, Indonesia, Japanese Idol, Nepalese Australian Idol, norway, Pop Idol. American Idol, simon cowell, Singapore, South Africa, South Korea, Sweden, Taiwan, The Netherlands, the United States, UNAEAUSTRALIA NEPALESE IDOL 2013, West African countries, Will Young, World Idol, X Factor | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on February 21, 2013
EIGHT masked gunmen made a hole in a security fence at Brussels’ international airport, drove onto the tarmac and snatched some $50 million worth of diamonds from the hold of a Swiss-bound plane without firing a shot, authorities said.
The gang used two black cars in their daring raid late Monday, grabbed the cache of stones and sped off into the darkness, said Anja Bijnens, spokeswoman for the Brussels prosecutor’s office.
“They tried to pass themselves off as police officers,” Ms Bijnens said. They reportedly wore outfits which resembled dark police clothing and both cars had blue lights on top, she said.
Police found one burnt-out vehicle close to the airport later Monday night and said they were still looking for clues.
The heist was estimated at some $50 million in diamonds, said Caroline De Wolf of the Antwerp World Diamond Centre.
Baggage carts make their way past a Helvetic Airways aircraft from which $50 million worth of diamonds were stolen on the tarmac of Brussels international airport in a daring diamond heist. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in International | Tagged: Belgium, Biggest diamond theft, Brussels, Brussels-Airport, Crime, Diamond Heist, Diamond Theft, Diamonds, UK News, World's biggest diamond theft, Zurich | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on February 6, 2013
By Bonnie Kavoussi
Lynsi Torres, the 30-year-old president and owner of In-N-Out Burger, is the youngest female billionaire in the U.S., Bloomberg reports. Her grandparents Harry and Esther Snyder founded the hamburger chain.
Torres does not have a college degree or much formal management training, Bloomberg reports. Thanks to In-N-Out’s large fan base at its nearly 280 restaurants in five states, the chain is now worth roughly $1.1 billion, according to estimates – 19,298 times more than the median U.S. household in 2010.
For more on In-N-Out’s secrets to success, you can read Bloomberg’s full report here.
Bloomberg has uncovered other secret billionaires over the past year. It reported in September that the private Elaine Marshall, 70, is the fourth-richest woman in the United States, thanks to her 15 percent stake in Koch Industries. Bloomberg revealed in August that Dirce Navarro de Camargo is Brazil’s richest woman. And Bloomberg reported last week that four step-grandchildren of former Nazi propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels are billionaires. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in International | Tagged: Business News, In n Out Lynsi Torres, In-N-Out, In-n-Out Burger, Lynsi Martinez, Lynsi Martinez In n Out, Lynsi Snyder, Lynsi Torres, Lynsi Torres Billionaire, Lynsi Torres Billionaire Bloomberg, Lynsi Torres In-n-Out | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on February 2, 2013
If the class action lawsuit over the Queensland floods proceeds following the devastating damage caused in 2011, then Engineers Australia wants the information surrounding the action to be made freely available.
An independent investigation has concluded that the flooding of a large number of properties down river from Wivenhoe Dam in 2011 would not have occurred had the dam’s operations been up to the standards expected of a reasonably competent dam operator.
Comprehensive modelling will form the basis of a class action lawsuit on behalf of thousands of flood victims in Queensland’s southeast. The modelling will be run on a no-win no-fee basis by Maurice Blackburn Lawyers and backed by litigation funder IMF Australia.
Maurice Blackburn Class Actions principal Damian Scattini said there is sufficient evidence to ensure a class action could proceed.
“Our modelling shows that had Wivenhoe been operated properly there would not have been flooding in some areas,” he said. “In other areas this poor operation meant flooding was much worse than it should have been. This evidence provides us with strong grounds to proceed with a class action.”
Rosalie was one of the badly affected suburbs in the 2011 Brisbane flood. Photo: Glen Hunt Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in International, Science &Technology | Tagged: Imf, Queensland floods, Wivenhoe Dam | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on January 24, 2013
Nepalese Community is going to participate first time in Pako Festa that will held on 23rd of February, 2013. Different organizations from Melbourne and Ballarat will join the festival and Lumbini-Kapilvastu Day Movement effort will to introduce Nepal as the birthplace of Buddha. In the festival Miss Nepal Australia, 2012 Deepashree Shah will perform Kumari dance.
Pako Festa, now in its thirty-first year, is Geelong’s much loved, award-winning, free, annual community arts festival – the biggest of its kind in Australia. Managed by Diversitat and held on the last weekend of February in Pakington Street, Geelong West, “the multicultural heart of Geelong”, it incorporates an extravagant street parade featuring around ninety floats and hundreds of performers representing forty-five affiliated ethnic communities and around sixty other community groups and organisations. The street is lined with stalls selling traditional foods and arts and crafts, and nine separate stages in the precinct offer performances of music and dance as well as interactive workshops and exhibitions. Pako Festa has become Victoria’s premier multicultural event, attended by well over 100,000 people in each of the last three years and estimated to inject close to $2.5 million dollars into the local economy just over the course of the day itself. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in International | Tagged: Australia, Buddha, Diversitat, Geelong, Kumari dance, Lumbini, Lumbini-Kapilvastu Day Movement, Melbourne, Miss Nepal, Miss Nepal Australia, Multicultural event, Pakington street, Pako festa | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on December 17, 2012
AP | By JOHN CHRISTOFFERSEN and MATT APUZZO
NEWTOWN, Conn. — The gunman in the Connecticut shooting rampage shot his mother multiple times in the head before going to the school and gunning down 26, authorities said Sunday as details emerged suggesting that Adam Lanza had planned an even more gruesome massacre but was stopped short.
Lanza blasted his way into the building and used a high-power rifle to kill 20 children and six adults, including the principal who tried to stop him, authorities said.
The unthinkable bloodshed might even have been worse. Gov. Dannel Malloy said Lanza shot himself as first responders entered the building and a law enforcement official said Lanza had “lots of ammo” on him when he died, enough to carry out significant additional carnage. The official was not authorized to release details of the case and spoke on condition of anonymity.
“We surmise that it was during the second classroom episode that he heard responders coming and apparently at that, decided to take his own life,” Malloy said on ABC’s “This Week.” Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in International | Tagged: Adam Lanza Suicide, Crime News, Gov. Dannel Malloy, Newton School Shootings, Sandy Hook Elementary School Shooting, Video | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on November 29, 2012
WASHINGTON — House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) announced who will chair all of the major House committees in the next Congress. And it turns out they all have something in common besides party affiliation: they’re all white men.
There isn’t a single woman or minority included in the mix of 19 House committee chairs announced Tuesday – a stark reality for a party desperate to appeal to women and minorities after both groups overwhelmingly rejected Republicans just weeks ago in the presidential election. The one female committee chair that House Republicans currently have, Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Fla.), is stepping down because her term is up. While there are still two lower-tier House committees awaiting a chair assignment — the Ethics Committee and House Administration — neither committee has any women or minority members.
At least one Senate Democrat was quick to point out that something is missing from the Republican lineup.
“Disappointed to see House committee chairmanships in the 113th Congress will not include a single woman. -PM,” tweeted Sen. Patty Murray (D-Wash.), who included a link to Boehner’s press release announcing the chair posts.
A House Republican leadership aide declined to comment on the lack of diversity in the party’s committee leadership. The aide noted, though, that GOP leaders just put four women in party leadership. Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-Wash) is the new House Republican Conference Chair, Rep. Lynn Jenkins (R-Kansas) is conference vice chair, Rep. Virginia Foxx (R-N.C.) is conference secretary, and Rep.-elect Ann Wagner (R-Mo.) will represent freshman members in party leadership.
To be fair, House committee chairs are typically chosen based on their seniority on the committee, and most committees don’t have Republican women or minorities at senior levels. In addition, there just aren’t that many House Republican women and minorities to go around. In the 113th Congress, which kicks off in January, House Republicans will have 20 women in their camp, compared to 61 House Democratic women. You can count on two hands the number of House Republicans who are minorities. By contrast, in the new Congress, the House Democratic Caucus will have a majority of women and minorities for the first time in history. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in International | Tagged: Boehner Committee Chairs, Elections 2012, House Committee Chairmen, House Committee Chairs, House Committees, Minorities, Politics News, Republican Party, Republican Party Minorities, Republican Party Women, Republicans Minorities, Republicans Women, Video, Women | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on November 15, 2012
Comment: One Nepali poet wrote, “God, kindly give me more trouble if you really love me”
Families living in poor neighborhoods lost almost everything during the Great Recession, potentially making it more difficult for them to gain a better life in the future, according to a recent report.
Households living in high-poverty neighborhoods saw a 91 percent decline in their overall wealth over the course of the downturn, according to a recent report from the Pew Charitable Trusts. Though low-income families lost less than their richer counterparts in terms of absolute value during the recession, their loss of wealth was much more extreme as a proportion of their total assets: households in high-poverty neighborhoods saw their net worth drop to $3,000 in 2009 from $32,000 in 2007, Diana Elliott, research manager of Pew’s Economic Mobility Project, told The Huffington Post.
This wealth drop among low-income families could prevent already struggling households from moving up the economic ladder.
“This could have a potential long-term impact upon economic mobility,” Elliott said. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in International | Tagged: Poverty, Business News, Video, Great Recession, Pew Research Center, Low Income Households, Pew Charitable Trusts, Low Income Households Great Recession, The Great Recession, Wealth Loss, Wealth Loss Great Recession | 1 Comment »
Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on September 13, 2012
WASHINGTON (AP) — The ranks of America’s poor remained stuck at record levels, although dwindling unemployment benefits and modest job gains helped stave off what experts had predicted would be the fourth rise in a row in the poverty rate.
10 Ways The U.S. Is Getting Worse For Most Americans
With joblessness persistently high, the gap between rich and poor increased in the last year, according to two major census measures. Also, the median, or midpoint, household income was $50,054, 1.5 percent lower than 2010 and a second straight decline.
NEW YORK, NY – APRIL 19: A man sips coffee April 19, 2012 in the Chinatown neighborhood of New York City. According to an analysis by the city’s Center for Economic Opportunity, the number of New Yorkers classified as poor in 2010 rose by nearly 100,000 from the year before, increasing the poverty rate by 1.3 percentage points to 21 percent.
A Census Bureau report released Wednesday provides a mixed picture of the economic well-being of U.S. households for 2011, when the unemployment rate improved to 8.9 percent from 9.6 percent in the previous year. The numbers are coming out not long before the Nov. 6 election in which the economy is the No. 1 issue and President Barack Obama is trying to make the case that the labor market, while not fully healed, is on the right track.
The overall poverty rate stood at 15 percent, statistically unchanged from the 15.1 percent in the previous year. The rate was better than a consensus estimate of demographers who had predicted, based on weak wage growth, a gain of up to half a percentage point, to levels not seen since 1965.
For last year, the official poverty line was an annual income of $23,021 for a family of four. By total numbers, roughly 46.2 million people remained below the poverty line, unchanged from 2010. That figure was the highest in more than half a century when records were kept. The 15 percent poverty rate was basically unchanged from 1993 and was the highest since 1983.
Broken down by state, New Mexico had the highest share of poor people, at 22.2 percent, according to rough calculations by the Census Bureau. It was followed by Louisiana, the District of Columbia, South Carolina, Arkansas and Georgia. On the other end of the scale, New Hampshire had the lowest, at 7.6 percent.
“This is good news and a surprise,” said Sheldon Danziger, a University of Michigan economist who closely tracks poverty. He pointed to a continuing boost from new unemployment benefits passed in 2009 that gave workers up to 99 weeks of payments after layoffs and didn’t run out for many people until late 2011. Also, job gains in the private sector that helped offset cuts in state and local government workers.
“It would indicate the stimulus was even more effective than believed,” he said. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in International | Tagged: Business News, Income Census, Middle Class Poverty, Poverty Census, Poverty Census Income, US Poverty, Us Poverty 2011, Us Poverty 2012, Video | Leave a Comment »